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Nabil Nahas channels the healing power of nature after the Beirut explosion

2 min read  ·  08 Jun 2023

Nabil Nahas, Untitled, (2022). Copyright the artist. Photo by Rahib Andraos

Nabil Nahas, Untitled, (2022). Copyright the artist. Photo by Rahib Andraos

The Nabil Nahas is on the HENI News radar after the veteran Lebanese American artist’s latest works went on show at an art-filled wine estate in the South of France.

Nabil Nahas's HENI Score—a unique artist sentiment—has soared by an impressive 178%, boosted by his solo show at Château La Coste, along with a string of strong auction sales.

Nahas's auction sales have totaled $424,700, with paintings selling for from $43,900 to $165,000, over the past two years. Recent online sales include an untitled canvas of 1980 and Equinox I (1995), both of which surpassed their high estimates, fetching $60,500 and $53,300 respectively at Christie's and Sotheby's.

The artist is represented by a number of galleries: Ben Brown Fine Arts of London and Hong Kong, Beirut’s Agial Art Gallery, Galerie Tanit, Munich, and Lawrie Shabibi, Dubai. His works have shown at leading art fairs, including editions of Art Basel and FIAC, Paris.

The artist, who was born in Beirut in 1949, spent part of his childhood there and in Cairo before moving to the US in the late 1960s where he has lived and worked ever since.

In 2023 at Château La Coste, Nahas presented new works, including dramatic paintings of the cedar trees of his native Lebanon and others inspired by starfishes washed up on a Long Island beach. The show also includes his first monumental sculpture, which is based on the sea creatures. His canvases have long been sculptural, featuring thick layers of encrusted paint.

Nabil Nahas, Untitled (2022), Copyright the artist. Photo by Rahib Andraos

Nabil Nahas, Untitled (2022), Copyright the artist. Photo by Rahib Andraos

Nahas created some of the tree-inspired works, including diptychs that combine his interest in abstract geometry and figurative painting, after the catastrophic explosion in the Port of Beirut in 2020.

The New York-based artist had only just arrived in Lebanon, where he also has a home, the night before the explosion. He told Forbes magazine: “I was in my studio at 600 meters in altitude in the mountains, which has very high ceilings, and my five-meter-tall curtains flew up. I thought the paint factory that’s not far from my place had exploded. Beirut was completely demolished. It was the same feeling I had after September 11. I lived five blocks away.”

To get a deeper understanding of Nabil Nahas’s career visit his HENI Dashboard; a unique graphical data tool illustrating an artist’s auction sales, shows, profiles, mentions and their HENI Score. You can search for any one of the 100,000 Artist Dashboards to quickly appreciate their trajectory as well as sharing via email, text and WhatsApp.